Looking inside an HTC Vive game using a green screen

Using the HTC Vive with a green screen lets others follow along

With some green screen help, you can show people what's going on inside your VR headset.

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    It's often hard to convey what's happening inside virtual reality. HTC Vive's green screen idea attempts to do just that -- and also make it more interesting to watch. I will admit: Watching someone else play in VR is typically pretty damn boring. But this concept from HTC represents a rare opportunity to show what someone's doing when they strap on a headset. The tech is clever, but not rocket science: A camera (with a HTC Vive controller attached for positioning within the VR world), captures you on green screen. The camera then sends this feed to a connected PC which processes it in tandem with the VR game (in this case, teleporting-shooter Jeeboman.) Then, like a hyped video-game promise from decades ago, it's like you're inside the game.

    This isn't a "killer feature" that pushes HTC Vive as a VR platform above all others -- unless you have a brightly painted green room, plus sufficient cameras and hardware. It is, however, a very smart way to illustrate why modern-day VR is so much better than its '90s ancestor, and how the immersion at work goes far beyond existing video games. That's very, very important if virtual reality is to become the hit many have predicted.

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    Mat once failed an audition to be the Milkybar Kid, an advert creation that pushed white chocolate on gluttonous British children. Two decades later, having repressed that early rejection, he moved to Japan, learned the language, earned his black belt in Judo and returned to UK, and soon joined Engadget's European team. After a few years leading Engadget's coverage from Japan, reporting on high-tech toilets and robot restaurants as Senior Editor, he now heads up our UK bureau in London.

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